Friday, October 4, 2013

ARC Review: The Sweetest Scent by Susan Laine

The Sweetest Scent (Senses and Sensations, #4)From the blurb:

Bro Sumner loves his girlfriend, Lacey Adair, who underneath her pretty dress is in fact a boy, and she loves him right back. They are an exclusive item in high school, but they face some dangerous opposition, including a bullying fellow jock on Bro’s football team and Lacey’s violent alcoholic father. Lacey gets some martial arts training from an ally, and both she and Bro end up having to use fists to defend themselves. Still, their high school years have been mostly happy. Their differing plans for the future after graduation, however, seem to separate them by thousands of miles.

A compromise with the help of relatives and friends means Bro and Lacey will go to school only an hour apart, but they still miss each other. It’s not long before they make new friendships and discover new romantic possibilities. Temptations, jealousies, distance, and expanding horizons could sever their relationship forever unless they can keep their dream of a life together alive in their hearts.

My rating:

This book seriously pissed me off in parts. I liked other parts quite a bit, but also felt slightly icked out with the explicit descriptions of teenage sex. Yes, yes - it was all very emotional, and those two love each other, but Mama here didn't need to read about it in such detail, OMG. I know teenagers have sex. They do. Frequently. And it was nice to see two of them be so very mature about it, but MAMA DIDN'T NEED TO READ ABOUT THE DETAILS, thank you.

Also, my good friend JAG says that the anal leakage described in the last part of this book doesn't happen. It's utter bullshit (his words). The sphincter does not open and close, and nothing comes out unless pushed. Research, people. Ask your gay friends about it before you write it.

I did like the relationship, with all the teenage angst of two young men in love, starting college, meeting other people etc. I would have liked to see more of Lacey's father and how that got figured out.

Didn't quite understand the plot point with the jerk guy in the campground, other than to introduce Eddy. Seriously, that could have been done in a different way. The bullying of LGBT Youth didn't have to be exploited this way. This shit happens, and the way it was brought about in this book really made me angry.

What also really, really ticked me off was the author's apparent belief that her readers are stupid. I didn't need to be told ad nauseam that Lacey is a boy who likes to dress like a girl. Once, maybe twice - that would have been enough. Yet, this point was hammered home again and again. The same happened during the sex scenes - Bro repeated over and over that Lacey is a girl, except for when she's naked - then she's a boy. Uh...what??? Why did this point have to be made repeatedly? I was quite aware after the second time.

With only a few exceptions, the dialogue felt organic and realistic for the ages depicted.

Impressive was also the portrayal of a strong female who never turn into a cliched bitch. There was an opportunity to use a mature female, but that was missed. Aunt Valerie became a plot point and then an afterthought, much like Lacey's father.

The relationship between Lacey and Bro was actually what I liked best. They really loved each other and stood by each other, and still acted like teenagers. What really came across was the respect they had for each other as far as sex was concerned, and how much they really cared to make each other happy. For that alone, this might be worth a read.

It's not classified as YA, as far as I can tell. The main couple however are young adults, seniors in High School, so keep that in mind.

I received a free ARC directly from the publisher. A positive review was not promised in return.

Buy this book: Amazon

Thanks for stopping by. Until next time, happy reading!!

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